Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Morbid Anatomy Library

Death makes no sense
except to people who have passionately loved life.

- Cioran

There is something immensely beautiful about death and the grotesque. It's the quiet dignity of a still body, the tragic song of blood and bones. And everything that reminds you of your own mortality, at once stirs discomfort in the pit of your stomach and inspires a desperate worship.

Sometimes it's simply the soft fur of a taxidermic creature, eyes glazed and glassy with a body frozen forever, that provokes a silent appreciation. That's a large part of the appeal of Obscura (my favorite store of antiques and oddities store in the East Village), all the hidden treasures and histories of the past tucked beneath dark aesthetics. When I chanced upon the Morbid Anatomy Library (actually while fact checking for TimeOut), I knew I had to pay it (and my love of all things morbid) a visit.

And, cabinets of curiosities, exoskeletons and fraglile insects, human teeth and sinister dentist tools on display, books on sideshows and dead things and taxidermy--the library didn't disappoint. But maybe it's just because of my inner dark nature. Something that strives toward the bizarre and dangerous in the face of all this nonchalant loveliness.

In any case, it was welcome reminder of the sublime end we all approach. Visit the Morbid Anatomy blog for more like minded curiosities. Email morbidanatomy at gmail.com to visit the actual library in Brooklyn. Quote and further dark words of wisdom at Blind Pony books.

(And how fitting that as I write this, an email from John Sexton, NYU president informs us of the suicide of a fellow student. Talk of our imminent mortality.)

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the lovely write-up, and for your long, thoughtful visit. Hope to host you again in the library sometime soon!